Sunday 23 October 2016

More than 30 people missing in China landslides following typhoon

Published 29/09/2016 | 04:01

A woman struggles with her umbrella against powerful gusts of wind generated by typhoon Megi in Taipei (AP)
A woman struggles with her umbrella against powerful gusts of wind generated by typhoon Megi in Taipei (AP)

At least 32 people were reported missing after rain-saturated hillsides collapsed onto villages in south-eastern China following a typhoon.

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A rescue operation was under way in Sucun village in China's Zhejiang province, south of the financial hub of Shanghai, after it was hit by a landslide on Wednesday evening, leaving 26 missing, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported.

Another six people are missing in Baofeng village, also in Zhejiang, after a landslide destroyed their homes.

The landslides were triggered by torrential rain brought by Typhoon Megi, which lashed south-eastern China on Wednesday.

The storm had already killed at least five people in China and Taiwan, and forced the closure of schools and offices and the cancellation of hundreds of flights.

State broadcaster CCTV showed rescue crews, accompanied by sniffer dogs, combing through piles of mud and rock in the mountainous, forested areas.

Megi caused more than £7.6 million in damage as it swept across Taiwan before weakening into a tropical storm after hitting the coastal city of Quanzhou in China's Fujian province early on Wednesday.

At its height, it was packing winds of up to 74mph, China's National Meteorological Centre said.

In Fuzhou, Fujian's capital, people were shown on state television walking through knee-deep waters that had swamped major roads. Rescue workers were seen pulling stranded residents through the streets on inflatable boats.

Taiwan's Central Emergency Operations Centre reported that 625 people were injured by Megi, including eight Japanese tourists whose tour bus flipped on its side. Three people suffered fatal falls and a fourth person died in a truck crash.

Megi dropped 12 inches of rain in the south and eastern mountains of Taiwan, and more than 220 flights were cancelled at Taiwan's Taoyuan International Airport.

It was the fourth typhoon to hit Taiwan this year and the third in two weeks.


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